Pediatrics: Special Needs

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Training Lay Trainers, 2012-2013

Building on our previous work developing the Bridge to Independence care coordination curriculum, we received a grant from the Healthier Wisconsin Partnership Program in 2012. This project allows us to disseminate the Bridge to Independence curriculum more widely. We recruited parents of children with special health care needs and prepared them to be Lay Trainers, with expertise in Bridge to Independence topics and skills for leading groups. The Lay Trainers are now offering training sessions to other families throughout Wisconsin.


Bridge to Independence, 2008-2011

Bridge to Independence sought to determine whether adding systematic competency-based care coordination education for families to our nationally recognized care coordination program empowers the families  to better ensure sustained medical and non-medical care coordination for this population.  Bridge to Independence was funded by the Department of Health and Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau.

The new care coordination education was developed using standard curriculum design methods. Its impact was compared with ad hoc education by measuring family satisfaction, quality of life, and autonomy (through self-assessed comfort and competency surveys, SNP use, and length of time to complete care coordination tasks). Sustainability and replicability of this new Tertiary Center / Family / PCP Partnership model will be further evaluated by comparing family and PCP satisfaction with SNP services, child health maintenance and access to care, and SNP return on investment and capacity for the Control and Intervention Groups. Thus, Bridge to Independence address barriers to care coordination and Medical Homes, fills gaps in the literature, and provides groundwork for future multi-center studies designed to identify best practices in care coordination of medically complex and fragile CYSHCN.

For more information about Special Needs Program research projects, contact Sarah Johaningsmeir, the SNP Clinical Research Coordinator, at
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Page Updated 07/09/2014